Williams named AP Female Athlete of the Year

World number one Serena Williams has been crowned the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year for the fourth time in her career. 

Williams, who previously won the award in 2002, 2009 and 2013, received 50 first-place votes and 352 points overall following a vote by U.S. editors and news directors. 

United States footballer Carli Lloyd, who scored a hat-trick in the FIFA Women's World Cup final against Japan in July, came second with 14 first-place votes and 243 points, while UFC fighters Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm finished in third and fourth respectively. 

Williams enjoyed a highly successful year as she finished with a 53-3 record and five titles, three of which came at grand slams. 

However, the 34-year-old fell short of becoming the first woman since Steffi Graf in1988 to complete a calendar Grand Slam as she was beaten by Roberta Vinci in the semi-finals of the US Open. 

The Associated Press’ Male Athlete of the Year will be revealed on Saturday.